Arizona Bill Could Put Medical Marijuana Under Microscope of Scrutiny | Marijuana

Arizona Bill Could Put Medical Marijuana Under Microscope of Scrutiny

1

Senate Bill 1420 won’t reduce Arizona’s costly medical marijuana card fees, but it will mandate state-regulated testing for medicinal cannabis.

Passed by a 7-1 vote by the House Committee on Military, Veterans and Regulatory Affairs Monday, the new primary objective of SB 1420 is to protect the state’s medical marijuana patients through testing for contaminants by state-sanctioned laboratories.

While the bipartisan legislation initially contained a provision to reduce Arizona’s card fees for patients and caregivers, the amended bill approved by the House committee eliminated the following verbiage: “The department may establish a sliding scale of patient application and renewal fees based on a qualifying patient’s household income.”

“If we lower the fees, it just makes it all that much easier for our kids to get cards,” explained Sheila Polk, the Yavapai County Attorney and co-chair of Arizonans for Responsible Drug Policy.

Rejected by Senate Republicans David Farnsworth (R-16th District), Gail Griffin (R-20th District) and John Kavanagh (R-23rd District) in January, over concerns that reduced fees could equate to increased participation in Arizona’s medical marijuana program, the bill’s primary sponsor, Sen. Sonny Borelli (R- 5th District) removed the reduced fees provisions for state-issued cards to ensure Republican support.

More about testing for potency and contaminants than patient affordability, SB 1420 would obligate the department of agriculture to regulate marijuana as an “agricultural commodity.” And, as an agricultural commodity, the Arizona Department of Agriculture would be accountable for the industry’s enforcement of marijuana testing, regulations, and standards.

Overseen by Gov. Doug Ducey’s Arizona Department of Agriculture, the bill would allocate $2 million from the medical marijuana fund to establish the Department of Agriculture’s testing program.

The 2010 Arizona Medical Marijuana Act (AMMA) was implemented through the initiative process and requires a three-fourths vote of both the House and Senate to amend.

About Author

My name is Monterey Bud and I was born in Long Beach and raised on the central coast. I surf, dab, burn and write. I'm a husband, a father and a lifelong consumer of connoisseur grade weed. I have been writing about marijuana strains, science, and politics for Marijuana.com since 2012. A Big Sur cultivator from the pre-helicopter days, I'm a big fan of new strains and breaking news. I can be reached on Twitter @MontereyBud

1 Comment

  1. This is just another way the Republicans (Repubturds) can keep cannabis in a somewhat of a prohibition state! Lowering the cost of the medical Cannabis Card WILL NOT MAKE IT EASIER FOR CHILDREN TO OBTAIN A CARD!!!!!! And to think this way is absurd at best! If a child want to come up with the money they will no matter how expensive it is. Plus why would a licensed doctor give a medical cannabis card to a minor without a parent there to approve such a thing? This whole thing about lowering the cost of the medical cannabis card will make it easier for children to get, is total bullsh*t and a ploy to keep cannabis in the state of modified prohibition. The politicians are yet again using our children as a means to keep cannabis in the state that it is in by pulling at the parents purse strings saying “its to keep our children safe”. Keeping our children safe is paramount but using crap like this over and over again is getting OLD!!!!

Leave A Reply